I am almost reluctant to provide a ranking of Old Forester whiskeys for fear of drawing too much attention to this fabulous line of bourbons. Old Forester produces such rich and high-quality whiskeys that, for the most part, have not gone the way of allocation. I want to keep it that way. Nevertheless, here is my ranking of one of the most reliable and consistent lines of whiskey of any distillery in the industry.
Old Forester Bourbon Rankings
I will cheat a little bit with this ranking and only focus on the four Whiskey Row Series Bourbons and Statesman. The Old Forester Whiskey Row Series honors distinct moments in the First Bottled Bourbon’s history.
All five of these bourbons have an MSRP of under $60 and are readily available across the United States.
A light and soft citrus palate is combined with oak and black pepper spice. This Old Forester bourbon pays homage to Georgie Garvin Brown, the founder of Old Forester, and their first bottle of whiskey.
With a dark and spicy palate of matured oak, dried figs, and black pepper, this Old Forester 1897 Bottled-in-Bond bourbon honors the U.S. Bottled in Bond Act of 1897.
Peppery, complex, buttery, and with hints of black pepper and tobacco Old Forester Statesman uses only barrels aged in the warmest parts of the Old Forester warehouses.
This creamy and charred oak expression that drinks higher than its proof features a rich caramel and sweet profile. It celebrates the overcoming of the October 2, 1910 fire that ripped through the bottling line of Old Forester.
Old Forester 1920 Prohibition Style features a more spice-driven, warm, peppery, and graham cracker caramel profile. This bourbon pays homage to the fact that the Brown-Forman distillery survived prohibition and continuously operated before, during, and after the prohibition ban of January 17, 1920.
While I have ranked Old Forester 1920 as the number one rated whisky of the five Old Forester bourbons mentioned, it is not my favorite. Old Forester 1910’s sweeter profile, even though it has a considerably lower proof level, slightly edges out 1920 as my personal favorite. I will admit that I am likely in the minority here with my personal preference. Still, you cannot go wrong with either bourbon.
How would you rank these bourbons?